Parts of Monroe County in Yellow Zone due to rising COVID-19 cases |

Parts of Monroe County in Yellow Zone due to rising COVID-19 cases

Parts of Monroe County in Yellow Zone due to rising COVID-19 cases Photo: News10NBC.

Updated: November 10, 2020 04:46 AM
Created: November 09, 2020 12:18 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Parts of Monroe County are now part of a Yellow Zone micro-cluster, which places new temporary restrictions on businesses and social activities due to a spike of COVID-19 cases.

In the last four weeks, Monroe County’s 7-day average positivity rate has increased from 0.77% to 3.63%, meeting the metrics for a Yellow Zone designation, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Monday.

The following municipal areas are included in the Yellow Zone:

  • City of Rochester
  • Greece
  • Irondequoit
  • Webster
  • Penfield
  • Perinton
  • East Rochester
  • Pittsford
  • Brighton
  • Henrietta
  • Chili
  • Gates

Restrictions under a Yellow Zone include the following.

  • 25-person maximum for mass gatherings both indoors and outdoors
  • Four-person maximum at restaurant tables
  • Bars and restaurants must close at midnight
  • 20% testing at schools
  • 50% capacity for houses of worship

Last Friday, Cuomo called Rochester, Webster, Penfield and Pittsford hotspots. The Monroe County Department of Health announced Sunday another record increase of 256 new confirmed cases, bringing the 7-day rolling average to 155 new cases per day. The largest number of cases were reported in people in their 20s.

Monroe County Executive Adam Bello and Public Health Commissioner Dr. Michael Mendoza held a media briefing Monday to address the Yellow Zone designation. Watch the video in the player below to see it (mobile users, click here):

The State of New York will provide rapid testing kits to Monroe County who will then provide the kits to school districts in the Yellow Zone.

Those school districts must then come up with a plan to test 20% of staff and students every week if they want to continue in-person learning while still in the Yellow Zone. Mendoza says the kits are less invasive than normal COVID-19 tests and can be administered by any school employee.    

Mendoza said meeting the testing requirement will require about 15,000 COVID-19 tests per week.

During the media briefing, Mendoza cautioned that an Orange Zone designation was not far away.

For the county to be designated an Orange Zone, the seven-day rolling average positivity rate would have to be 4% or higher for 10 days. 

Mendoza says mathematically, by the end of the week, Monroe County could no longer be a Yellow Zone, but realistically that's not likely. 

Parts of Erie and Onondaga counties were also designated as Yellow Zones on Monday. 

"The microcluster approach works," Cuomo said. "The micro-cluster work is inarguable."

The governor pointed to a few examples, including Broome County, where the positivity rate dropped from 8% to 3.5%, and Orange County, where it dropped from 12% to 2%.

Cuomo said 26 New Yorkers died from COVID-19 Sunday and 1,400 people were in the hospital, including 282 in the ICU.

 Click here to view a summary of restrictions within zones on the state's website. 

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